Steve Jacobs Bio
Last updated: August 25, 2013
President, IDEAL Group, Inc. and,
CEO, Apps4Android, Inc.
Phone: (614) 777-0660
Fax: (614) 522-1031
TTY: (800) 750-0750
Steve Jacobs has been in the computer industry since the mid '70s. Steve is President of IDEAL Group, Inc. http://ideal-group.org and CEO of Apps4Android, Inc. http://apps4android.org, one of six IDEAL Group companies. IDEAL Group is a 2002 spin-off from IDEAL at NCR Corporation http://ncr.com where Steve served as President until his retirement at the end of 2002.
IDEAL Group and its subsidiary companies are all Not Just For Profit (NJFP) corporations. NJFP is a concept that embraces an expanded set of values for defining and evaluating a company's performance. One of our key values is our level of success in driving significant cost-effective benefits for customers (our average development cost per installation of our mobile applications is $0.09) while operating in a self-sustainable manner. IDEAL Group's mission is "to enhance the independence, quality-of-life, quality-of-education and employability of individuals with disabilities through the development of fully-accessible, high-quality, cost-effective, products and services."
IDEAL Group serves as the parent company of six information and communications technology companies. They are:
Conferencing Systems Group, Inc.
Established in January, 2003, Online Conferencing Systems Group offers fully-accessible, 508-compliant, online conferencing and distance-learning services, systems and support. Every month thousands of people from every corner of the world use IDEAL Conference to meet, participate in, and deliver accessible webinars.
InftyReader Group, Inc.
Established in March, 2007, InftyReader Group offers a sophisticated optical character recognition application that is used by thousands of universities around the world to recognize, convert, and enable the editing of math documents into accessible formats in support of students with print disabilities. Converted formats include LaTeX, MathML, Human Readable TeX, and Word XML. You Tube Videos of InftyReader in Action!!
Established in June, 2008, EasyCC is a telecom company that provides real-time text-streaming products, services, and infrastructures. EasyCC's cost-effective offerings are accessible on any platform, including mobile devices. EasyCC’s infrastructure provides the ability to generate captions using advanced speech recognition technology... while enabling the correction of misinterpreted and misspelled words in real-time. EasyCC Caption Correction System Explained
Onymous Heroes, Inc.
Acquired in July, 2010, Onymous Heroes develops Android utilities, browsers, application installers, image animation applications and much more. Onymous has over 1.5 million installations in 150 countries.
Established in October, 2011, Easy Access is a joint venture company of Apps4Android and Accessible Systems of India. Easy Access provides accessible document conversion utilities, reading applications, and services that address the access needs of individuals with print disabilities.
Established in January, 2009, Apps4Android is the world’s largest developer of Android accessibility applications with more than 10 million installations in 150 countries. Apps4android apps are being used on 3,767 different model devices made by 57 manufacturers distributed by 545 wireless service providers in 150 countries and U.S. territories. Here's a listing of 808,000 installations of apps designed exclusively for wireless service providers around the world.
Previous to NCR’s spin-off from AT&T, Steve served as Chairman of AT&T Bell Lab’s Project Freedom. In 1992-1993 Steve’s group pioneered the use of interactive video technology for sign-language communications over telephone lines (dual ISDNs). This technology, now in the mainstream, is referred to as Video Relay Services (VRS). More: http://ideal-group.org/ivr/
Appointments, Congressional Testimonies, Recognitions:
Recognized, by the White House, as a Champion of Change for leading education
and employment efforts in science, technology, engineering and math for
Americans with disabilities. 
Federal Communications Commission’s Video Programming and Emergency Access
Advisory Committee [2010-2012]
Expert Witness: House Committee on the Judiciary Subcommittee on the
Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties hearing on Achieving the
Promise of the Americans with Disabilities Act in the Digital Age – Current
Issues, Challenges, and Opportunities 
http://judiciary.house.gov/hearings/hear_100422_1.html and http://judiciary.house.gov/hearings/pdf/Jacobs100422.pdf
Federal Communications Commission’s Consumer Advisory Committee [2005-2007]
Governor's Council on People with Disabilities [2002-2005]
Federal Communications Commission's Consumer/Disability Telecommunications
Advisory Committee which has since been renamed the FCC Consumer Advisory
Access Board's Electronic and Information Technology Access Advisory Committee
Access Board's Telecommunications Access Advisory Committee [1997-1998]
Expert Witness: House Committee on Science Subcommittee on Technology hearing
on Meeting the Needs of People with Disabilities through Federal Technology
Developing Accessible, Mobile-Friendly Content for Students with Print
Disabilities in Grades 4-9, with an Emphasis on Mathematics 
Enhancing the Accessibility of Technology-Based Work Environments with the
Support of Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) 
Corporate Social Innovation Model: Enabling Positive Societal Change through
the Distribution and Use of Accessible ICT Products and Services 
Global Business Benefits of Accessible Information and Communication
Technology (ICT) Design 
Co-author: Department of Commerce's STAT-USA/Internet Companion to
International Business: Highlighting Accessibly-Designed Information and
Communications Technology 
Co-author: "Over the Horizon: Potential Impact of Emerging Trends in
Information and Communication Technology on Disability Policy and Practice
Co-author: National Council on Disability report entitled, "Design for
Inclusion: Creating a New Marketplace" 
Author: "Design for Inclusion: Industry White Paper" 
Co-author: National Task Force on Technology and Disability report entitled,
"Within Our Reach" 
Co-author: the U.S. Access Board's Electronic and Information Technology
Access Advisory Committee Report that was used to develop the Access Board’s
Electronic and Information Technology Accessibility Standards 
Co-author: the Telecommunications Access Advisory Committee Final Report that
was used, by the Access Board, to develop their Telecommunications Act
Accessibility Guidelines 
Sampling of Historical Projects:
Bush 54th Inauguration Technology Project:
Integrated technology into George W. Bush's Inauguration Program and Guidebook. The project repurposed technology being used by the Israeli military to come up with a method that enables a person who is blind to scan 77 pages of text... with only one pass of a scanner, with 100% accuracy.
54th Program Book (See Page 32):
54th Guide Book (See Page 77)
Edgar Online: Bush Presidential Inauguration Publications Use
IDEAL at NCR and Intacta Technologies, Inc. Demonstrate New
Fifty-Fourth eNaugural.com Ball Webcast:
Hosted fully-accessible 54th eNaugural.com Ball Webcast:
AT&T Bell Labs Project Freedom:
From 1991-1994 Steve served as Chairman of AT&T Project Freedom. In 1993 Steve’s group pioneered the use of interactive video technology for sign-language communications over telephone lines (dual ISDNs). This technology is now referred to as Video Relay Services (VRS).
Video: First ASL Communication Over Telephones. This video
also contains historical footage of Alexander Graham Bell.
Although a competitor, Sprint used Project Freedom's Vistium
Video System for their first VRS pilot test in Texas. Here is a 1995 flyer
announcing the pilot test:
GA-SK Newsletter article about Sprint's pilot test:
Photo of Reid Huntt (Chairman of the FCC at that time) and Steve Jacobs,
Chairman, AT&T Project Freedom demonstrating their video system to FCC
Designed, developed and implemented accessible prototype kiosks for the Smithsonian Institution's American History Museum
President Clinton's Digital Divide Tour:
Vice President Gore's Digital Talking Book:
Published a Digital Talking Book in support of a reception held at the residence of Vice President Gore.
Business Week Article:
Internet Resource Center for the 53rd Presidential Inauguration
President Clinton's 53rd Presidential Inauguration:
Integrated technology into the 53rd Presidential Inaugural Program Book.
Inauguration Program Book:
Education and Family:
Steve is a 1973 graduate of Ohio State University. Steve and wife, Pauline, have been married for 39 years. Pauline and Steve have two daughters, Shana and Jessica, and a granddaughter Brooke... who is Steve’s boss.